Undergraduate Academic Programs

Degree Programs

Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology (BSK), Exercise Science Major

Description of Program

The major in exercise science has a science-based curriculum that provides a broad background for students planning to further their education at the graduate level. The program emphasizes these primary disciplines: anatomy, biomechanics, exercise physiology, sport psychology, and motor learning/control. Students complete a rigorous curriculum in major course work as well as in areas such as anatomy, chemistry, mathematics, physics, physiology, and psychology. The major provides an excellent preparation for graduate work in adapted physical education, ergonomics, biomechanics, exercise physiology, motor control, sport psychology, and sports medicine. In addition, students with this major prepare for admission to graduate programs in physical and occupational therapy, medicine, physician assistant, dentistry, podiatry, optometry, chiropractic, osteopathy, and other allied health fields.


Apply online for undergraduate admission to Indiana University at http://admit.indiana.edu/.

A newly admitted freshman pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology degree with a major in exercise science will receive an offer of direct freshman admission to the exercise science program if he or she meets both of the following criteria:

  • The applicant must have earned one of the following minimum standardized test scores: A combined critical reading and math score of 1270 on the SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) or a composite score of 29 on the ACT (American College Test).
  • The applicant must have either graduated in the top 12 percent of his or her high school graduating class or earned a minimum high school GPA of 3.5.

Before entering the School of Public Health - Bloomington as an exercise science major, all other students must meet both of the following criteria:

  • The student must successfully complete at least 26 credit hours.
  • The student must have a minimum 2.5 cumulative grade point average (GPA) at Indiana University.

Students in the University Division must also declare their intention to major in exercise science to the University Division Records Office. Undergraduate students who complete the semester before certification of admission to the school with less than a 2.0 GPA for the semester will be admitted on a probationary status.

International applicants for admission to a second undergraduate degree program in the School of Public Health - Bloomington, whose primary language is not English, must satisfy one of the following criteria before being considered for admission directly into one the School's degree programs:

  • submission of a minimum score on the Test Of English As a Foreign Language (TOEFL), of 550 on the paper-based test, or 213 on the computer-based test, or 80 on the Internet-based test.
  • submission of a minimum score of 7 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).
  • proof of completing at least three full years of secondary school in a predominantly English speaking country. A current list of such countries can be found here.

For students from countries where the TOEFL and the IELTS are not available, other evidence of English proficiency may be considered.

All entering international students whose primary language is not English will be required to take a special examination in English with IU prior to registering. Prepared by IU and designed to test a student’s ability to use English in an academic setting, the exam consists of three parts: an essay on a general topic, a listening comprehension exercise, and a grammar, vocabulary, and reading comprehension section. There is little that one can do to prepare for this exam other than to continue using written and spoken English at every opportunity. Appropriate remedial English courses may be prescribed on the basis of the results of this test.

International students whose primary language is not English must agree to take any English language courses prescribed from the results of this examination. Fees for special part-time English courses are the same as for other courses; however, credits earned do not meet degree requirements. If the results of the proficiency examination indicate that full-time work in English is required, the student will be assigned to the Intensive English Program (IEP).  

Students enrolled in IEP do not take academic courses until they achieve adequate English proficiency. If a student has serious doubts about English ability and is not financially prepared to undertake the additional time and expense of an intensive English program here, the student should consider completing English study in the student’s home country. In addition, the student may consider delaying admission to a future session.

Degree Requirements

The four-year exercise science curriculum in the subject matter of human movement and sport, provides the student with an understanding of current theoretical problems. Through the use of restricted electives, the student is asked to relate knowledge from other disciplines to the study of human performance. There is a minimum 2.5 cumulative grade point average (GPA) entrance requirement. Graduation requirements include:

  • completion of general education requirements.
  • completion of exercise science major requirements.
  • a minimum of 120 successfully completed credit hours which count toward the degree program.
  • a minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA.
  • a minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA in a combination of ANAT-A 215 and courses with the following department code-prefixes: SPH-A, SPH-C, SPH-D, SPH-K, and SPH-M. 
  • No Pass/Fail except for free electives.
General Education (20 – 39 credits)

All undergraduate students must complete the IU Bloomington campus-wide general education common ground requirements. Such students must visit the 2013-2014 General Education Bulletin to view these requirements.

Major (81-90 cr.)

Exercise Science Course Requirement (42-45 cr.)
Complete each of the following courses:

  • SPH-I 119 Personal Fitness (2 cr.)
  • SPH-K 205 Structural Kinesiology (3 cr.) or ANAT-A 215 Basic Human Anatomy (5 cr.) +(N&M)
  • SPH-K 212 Introduction to Exercise Science (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 391 Biomechanics (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 405 Introduction to Sport Psychology (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 409 Basic Physiology of Exercise (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 450 Topic: Introduction to Kinesiology and Public Health (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 452 Motor Learning (3 cr.)
  • SPH-N 231 Human Nutrition (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • PHSL-P 215 Basic Human Physiology (5 cr.) +(N&M)
  • PHYS-P 201 General Physics I (5 cr.) +(N&M)
  • PSY-K 300 Statistical Techniques (3 cr.) or STAT-S 300 Introduction to Applied Statistical Methods (4 cr.) or STAT-S 303 Applied Statistical Methods for the Life Sciences ((3 cr.)
  • PSY-P 101 or PSY-P 155 Introduction to Psychology I (3 cr.) +(N&M)

Exercise Science Electives (19 cr.)
Complete a minimum of 19 credits from the following exercise science elective courses:

  • SPH-B 354 Multidisciplinary Perspectives in Gerontology (3 cr.)
  • SPH-F 150 Life Span Development (3 cr.) +(S&H) or EDUC-P 314 Life Span Development (3 cr.)
  • SPH-H 160 First Aid and Emergency Care (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 217 Methods of Group Exercise Instruction (3 cr.) (P: K 216)
  • SPH-K 280 Basic Prevention and Care of Athletic Injuries (2 cr.)
  • SPH-K 283 Group Fitness Practicum (2 cr.)
  • SPH-K 301 Job Search Strategies for Kinesiology Students (1 cr.)
  • SPH-K 317 Theory and Practice of Resistance Training (2 cr.)
  • SPH-K 335 Theories of Conditioning for Coaching (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 385 (Formerly: HPER-P 399) Practicum in Adapted Physical Education (1-2 cr.)
  • SPH-K 398 Adapted Physical Education (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 412 Exercise in Health and Disease (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 416 Fitness Management (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 417 Physical Activity and Disease: Prevention and Treatment (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 435 Philosophical Foundations of Coaching (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 490 Motor Development and Learning (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 492 (Formerly: HPER-P 491) Research in Kinesiology (3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 496 (Formerly: HPER-P 492) Laboratory Assisting or Field Experience in Kinesiology (1-3 cr.)
  • SPH-K 497 (Formerly: HPER-P 448) Internship in Exercise Science (1-3 cr.)
  • SPH-M 211 Introduction to Sport Management (3 cr.)
  • SPH-M 333 Sport in America: Historical Perspective (3 cr.)
  • SPH-M 382 (Formerly: HPER-P 392) Sport in American Society (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-A 105 Human Origins (3 cr.) +(S&H)
  • ANAT-A 464 Human Tissue Biology (4 cr.)
  • ANTH-A 303 Evolution and Prehistory (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-B 200 Bioanthropology (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • ANTH-B 301 Bioanthropology Laboratory (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-B 480 Human Growth and Development (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-L 100 Humans and the Biological World (5 cr.) +(N&M) or BIOL-L 104 Introductory Biology Lectures (3 cr.) +(N&M) or BIOL-L 112 Introduction to Biology: Biological Mechanisms (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • BIOL-L 111 Introduction to Biology: Evolution and Diversity (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • BIOL-L 113 Biology Laboratory (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-L 211 Molecular Biology (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-L 302 Topics in Human Biology (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-L 311 Genetics and Development (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-L 312 Cell Biology (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-L 313 Cell Biology Laboratory (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-L 330 Biology of the Cell (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-M 200 Microorganisms in Nature and Disease (3 cr.)
  • BIOL-M 215 Microorganism Laboratory (1 cr.)
  • BIOL-P 451 Integrative Human Physiology (4 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 103 Introduction to Chemical Principles (5 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 118 Principles of Chemistry and Biochemistry II (5 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 341 Organic Chemistry I (3 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 342 Organic Chemistry II (3 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 343 Organic Chemistry Laboratory I (2 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 344 Organic Chemistry Laboratory II (2 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 360 Elementary Physical Chemistry (3 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 483 Biological Chemistry (3 cr.)
  • CHEM-C 485 Biosynthesis and Physiology (3 cr.)
  • CHEM-N 330 Intermediate Inorganic Chemistry (5 cr.)
  • CHEM-R 340 Survey of Organic Chemistry (3 cr.)
  • CLAS-C 209 Medical Terms from Greek and Latin (2 cr.)
  • CSCI-A 202 Introduction to Programming II (4 cr.) +(N&M)
  • CSCI-A 304 Introduction to C++ Programming (2 cr.)
  • CSCI-C 212 Introduction to Software Systems (4 cr.) +(N&M)
  • CSCI-C 241 Discrete Structures for Computer Science (3 cr.)
  • CSCI-C 311 Programming Languages (4 cr.)
  • CSCI-C 335 Computer Structures (4 cr.)
  • CSCI-C 343 Data Structures (4 cr.)
  • HPSC-X 200 Introduction to Scientific Reasoning (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • MATH-M 301 Applied Linear Algebra (3 cr.)
  • MATH-M 303 Linear Algebra for Undergraduates (3 cr.)
  • MATH-M 311 Calculus DI (4 cr.)
  • MATH-M 312 Calculus IV (3 cr.)
  • MSCI-M 131 Disease and the Human Body (3 cr.)
  • MSCI-M 216 Medical Science of Psychoactive Drugs (3 cr.) +(A&H)
  • PHIL-P 105 Thinking and Reasoning (3 cr.) +(A&H)
  • PHIL-P 140 Elementary Ethics (3 cr.) +(A&H)
  • PHIL-P 150 Elementary Logic (3 cr.) +(A&H)
  • PHIL-P 250 Introduction to Symbolic Logic (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • PHIL-P 251 Intermediate Symbolic Logic (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • PHYS-P 202 General Physics 2 (5 cr.) +(N&M)
  • PHYS-P 302 Elementary Electronics (2 cr.)
  • PSY-P ___ Any Psychology course (3 cr.)

Math Requirement (3-4 cr.)
Complete one of the following math options that was not used to satisfy the general education, mathematical modeling requirement:

  • MATH-M 118 Finite Mathematics (3 cr.) +(N&M) or V 118 Finite and Consumer Mathematics (3 cr.) +(N&M) or V 118 Finite Mathematics for Social and Biological Sciences (3 cr.) +(N&M) or D 116 and D 117 Introduction to Finite Mathematics I-II (2-2 cr.) +(N&M)
  • MATH-M 119 Brief Survey of Calculus I (3 cr.) or MATH-M 211 Calculus I (4 cr.) +(N&M)
  • MATH-M 120 Brief Survey of Calculus II (3 cr.) or MATH-M 212 Calculus II (4 cr.) +(N&M)

Chemistry Requirement (5-10 cr.)
Complete one of the following chemistry options:

Option 1: Complete the following two chemistry courses

  • CHEM-C 117 Principles of Chemistry and Biochemistry I (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • CHEM-C 127 Chemistry and Biochemistry Laboratory I (2 cr.) +(N&M)


Option 2: Complete the following four chemistry courses:

  • CHEM-C 101 Elementary Chemistry I (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • CHEM-C 121 Elementary Chemistry Laboratory I (2 cr.) +(N&M)
  • CHEM-C 102 Elementary Chemistry II (N&M) (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • CHEM-C 122 Elementary Chemistry Laboratory II (2 cr.) +(N&M)

Computer requirement (3 cr.)
Complete one of the following computer courses:

  • BUS-K 201 The Computer in Business (3 cr.)
  • CSCI-A 110 Introduction to Computers and Computing (3 cr.) +(N&M)
  • SPH-P 200 Microcomputer Applications in Kinesiology (3 cr.)
  • SPH-R 212 Computers in Park, Recreation, and Tourism Management (3 cr.)

Communication Requirement (3 cr.)
Complete the following communication course:

  • CMCL-C 121 Public Speaking (3 cr.) +(A&H)

Writing Requirement (6 cr.)
Complete 6 credits from the following writing courses:

  • BUS-C 204 Business Communications (3 cr.)
  • CMCL-C 323 Speech Composition (3 cr.)
  • ENG-W 103 Introduction to Creative Writing (3 cr.) +(A&H)
  • ENG-W 202 English Grammar Review (1 cr.)
  • ENG-W 203 Creative Writing (3 cr.)
  • ENG-W 231 Professional Writing Skills (3 cr.)
  • ENG-W 240 Community Service Writing (3 cr.)
  • ENG-W 270 Argumentative Writing (3 cr.)
  • ENG-W 280 Literary Editing and Publishing (3 cr.)
  • ENG-W 350 Advanced Expository Writing (3 cr.)
  • TEL-T 211 Writing for Electronic Media (3 cr.)

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Certification Required
A student applying to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology degree in exercise science must present evidence of current CPR certification to the School of Public Health - Bloomington recorder's office in SPH Room 115 at the time the student applies for graduation. The document submitted must display a date which indicates that the student is currently certified in CPR. Certification in CPR is only acceptable from the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, or the National Safety Council.

+ Courses followed by a A&H notation apply toward completion of both the major requirement and the general education, arts and humanities requirement.

+ Courses followed by a N&M notation apply toward completion of both the major requirement and the general education, natural and mathematic sciences requirement.

+ Courses followed by a S&H notation apply toward completion of both the major requirement and the general education, social and historical studies requirement.

Suggested Courses for the First-Year Exercise Science Student
Fall Semester (15 cr.)
Chemistry Preparation Course or an Arts and Humanities course or a World Languages and Culture course (3 cr.)
ENG-W 131 Elementary Composition 1 (3 cr.) or ENG-W 170 Introduction to Argumentative Writing (3 cr.)
MATH-M 118 Finite Mathematics (3 cr.) or MATH-M 119 Brief Survey of Calculus I (3 cr.)
SPH-K 212 Introduction to Exercise Science (3 cr.)
SPH-K 450 Topic: Introduction to Kinesiology and Public Health (3 cr.)

Spring Semester (16 cr.)
CHEM-C 117 Principles of Chemistry and Biochemistry I (3 cr.) and CHEM-C 127 Chemistry and Biochemistry Laboratory I (2 cr.)
CHEM-C 101 Elementary Chemistry (3 cr.) and CHEM-C 121 Elementary Chemistry Laboratory (2 cr.)
CMCL-C 121 Public Speaking (3 cr.)
SPH-I 119 Personal Fitness (2 cr.)
Exercise Science Elective (3 cr.)
Second Mathematics Course (3 cr.)

Special Opportunities

Majors have the opportunity to work with faculty research specialists in areas specific to kinesiology. Students planning to pursue graduate kinesiology programs are encouraged to gain laboratory research experience offered by departmental faculty. Internship opportunities outside of the department in a wide variety of medical and allied health areas are coordinated by the Kinesiology Career office. Throughout the year, the very active Kinesiology Club invites speakers from a number of health profession areas to share their expertise and professional perspective with majors. Through these experiences, students learn firsthand about the graduate programs/professions of interest to them. Expert and in-depth advising services help students tailor their major program to meet their eventual goals.


Many students with this major are preparing to enter graduate programs in their career area of interest, while others may seek positions in pharmaceutical sales, or sales or marketing of medical, fitness, and sports related equipment. Others seek employment as rehabilitation specialists in hospitals.

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